Thursday, February 7, 2008

We've Got Something In Common- Toya
I still can't believe Bobby and Whitney couldn't work it out.

Talk about random.

There is a movie being shot right now called “Toya at 33” starring me. I really don’t understand it and if I could get a heads up on who will be playing the leading man well…you know, I should know by now to watch what I ask for so I am not going to go any further with that.

I showed up late AGAIN for membership class this past Sunday. I had spent a good part of the late hours the night before talking with my friend Mike. Pricilla and I call him Uncle Mike because he always looks out for us and gives us the best advice. This particular evening, he was urging with me to be careful to marry someone with similar passion (which is what I’ve always wanted: Will and Jada, Ossie and Ruby, etc.) We were discussing the number of divorces amongst Christians that seem to be taking place left and right. There were two couples that I knew were having some problems but I had no idea that they were already divorced. This is what Mike said: “Toya, you are called to an area of labor that takes some sacrifice. Sometimes the people who are called to it pair up with people who don’t understand the sacrifice involved…both parties in the pairs mentioned just failed to understand the cost. Love is not enough. It’s a covenant. Every week it’s a new high profile couple going through some drama. Pray for us and understand…SAME RIB, SAME PASSION.”

So since I was late this Sunday, I decided to spend some time in the cafĂ© and wait for Sunday service to begin. It was then when this woman in her mid-40’s came up to me and started talking to me. She saw me looking at a book of classes being offered at church and asked which one I was taking. I told her I was still trying to decide since there were so many. She said that she was a part of a ministry for those interested in photography and worked with this gentleman named Jeff who was at a table not far from us. Then out of the blue she asked if she could take some pictures of me. Now I don’t love taking pictures, at least not outside of fun shots with friends but I figured why not. She took some and seemed to be more excited about them than I was. She then asked if I would go to the other side of the room and take some more pictures while sitting on a chair. I immediately liked this woman. I love being around people that are passionate about what they do and take every opportunity to fulfill that passion.

”Now give me a really sweet one. Like, think about your valentine.” “Oh, I don’t have a valentine.” “Well, think about your husband. Like think about what you would like for him to be like.” “Yeah, sorry. I really have no idea at this point.” She then walked up to me and showed me two crosses on her neck. “When I was 16, I read a book by Josh McDowell that said to start praying for your husband while you are single. I have kept this extra cross on my necklace to remind me to pray for my husband.” “Oh gosh” I thought. “One of those. One of those ‘husband dreamers’”. I completely judged her mind you. I figured her to be one of those “I can’t wait for my prince to come rescue me” women that was so desperately still waiting to get married… in her mid-40’s. I pegged her to be what would be my worst nightmare. The thing I have fought against being almost my entire adult life: A woman that very obviously wants to be married and wears her desperation on her sleeve…or rather around her neck. “Think of your favorite valentine’s day, then.” I then thought about the Valentine’s Day I spent with 4 kids because as a gift to their parents, I watched their kids and made dinner and cookies while they had their date night. Sadly enough, this couple is now too going through a divorce. Thinking of this night made me laugh and so the picture I took was one of me giggling but not one of me thinking about being in love and trust me I tried. I just couldn’t really even imagine it.

“Do you want anything for these pictures?” I asked suspiciously while writing down my email address so she could send me the shots off our impromptu photo shoot. “Oh no, not at all. Jeff is such a great photographer. He can take any picture and make them look flawless. He uses this…(insert photography jargon here)… You really are beautiful. So photogenic.” I started thinking, “Ok, God. My esteem has been a little on the low side lately. Did you send this woman to make me feel pretty? What is really going on here?” And then she said this…

“One of the pastors asked if I would shoot a baby dedication in December but I was getting married so I couldn’t do it so I got...” “Wait, did you just say that you got married?” “Yeah, I got married in December.” “So you’re married? To who?” “To Jeff!” I looked over and saw Jeff, the aforementioned fabulous photographer, at the next table waving at me.

Same rib. Same passion. Selah.

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